How to get over a divorce after a long marriageDivorce is now commonly recognised as one of the most traumatic things you can go through in life, second only to the death of a loved one. When you are separating after a long marriage, divorce can be painful, difficult, and complicated.

Here at Ian Walker Family Law, we understand divorce is an emotionally challenging time. The emotional aspects of any divorce can derail the legal process. There are also important financial decisions to make. We are therefore committed to offering a holistic service, and to supporting you to create a powerful team around you.

So, what are the best ways to get over a divorce after a long marriage? We talked to three experts, and asked them for their top tips when it comes to surviving divorce after long marriage:

Fiona Griffin, head of Divorce and Relationships at Ian Walker Family Law, says:

  1. Take early legal advice. It doesn’t matter if you choose not to implement the advice straight away. Don’t be discouraged by anyone who says you do not need legal advice, they may not have your best interests at heart. You can set a budget for that advice, so costs don’t run away.
  2. Stay calm. Nothing needs to be decided overnight and you do not need to be bounced into making long-term decisions until you are satisfied that you have all the information to make the decision.
  3. Remember to consider pension provisions. Pensions may be the most valuable asset of a long marriage. Don’t automatically assume that one person will keep the pension and the other will keep the house, this may not be financially prudent.
  4. Find out about methods that can help you to facilitate discussions with your former spouse about your separation, such as Resolution Together, Collaborative Law, or Family Mediation. We are here to support and help and not to make a difficult situation any worse.
  5. Look to the future and protect your financial circumstances if you are entering into new relationships.

Claire Macklin, Break Up & Divorce Coach says:

How to get over a divorce after a long marriage

  1. Gather a really strong support network. Spend time with your “Radiator” friends and family; those who buoy you up and give you what you need. Avoid those who drain your energy or try to tell you what to do. Remember they are not you, and they aren’t in your situation.
  2. Find calm – use strategies to help you stay calm. Your breath is a fabulous, free resource. When you feel stressed, or your emotions rising, breathe in while you count to 5, hold for 2, and release for 7. You can’t count and think at the same time, so this will help calm your heart rate, and interrupt swirling thoughts.
  3. Know what you can and can’t control. You can control your words, actions, behaviours, thoughts, responses, and reactions. You can’t control anyone else’s, so keep your focus on you, and your choices – as this is where your power lies.
  4. Control the Controllables – in the early days of your separation, this could be little choices like what you wear (dress for how you WANT to feel), the music you listen to, and the TV you watch. You can control what you look at on social media, so avoid looking at what your ex is doing… You can control who you spend time with, and how you tell your story.
  5. Take each day one step at a time. You don’t have to do everything today. Focus on the one next step. Over time, lots of small steps taken consistently add up to great leaps forward.

Carolyn Matravers, Chartered Financial Planner at Bluebell Financial Management, says:

  1. Choose your support network carefully – make sure you feel comfortable with the professional services that you have in place and that they understand you and the dynamics of your situation so that they can work effectively together to support you on the journey ahead – everyone in your ‘tool kit’ should be working towards the same end goal.
  2. Make sure you are receiving all the income to which you are entitled – remember that Attendance Allowance is a non-means tested benefit available to those over State pension age that fulfil certain health criteria. This fixed income is paid in addition to your basic State pension.
  3. Get your ‘ducks in a row’ and start the difficult conversations – putting your important paperwork in place will provide real peace of mind.
  4. Control the controllables – don’t feel you have to take everything on board yourself – use your ‘tool kit’ to help alleviate some of the external pressures – we can help to provide guidance and support with any care decisions regarding loved ones.
  5. You will feel more empowered if you have a clear plan of action that you can work through at your own pace.

How We Can Help

Ian Walker Family Law & Mediation Solicitors are award-winning family solicitors and are recognised as one of the leading family law firms in the South West of England with services covering family law & mediation, divorce law, child law, and arbitration. Please contact the team to speak to one of our specialist solicitors.

Sign up to our Divorce Support Club

The Divorce Support Club provides individuals with a safe, informal place to ask questions and gather a toolkit to help you manage emotions, get clarity around the things that worry or scare you and focus on what you CAN do, so that you feel stronger and more confident. Meeting via monthly online webinars we talk about strategies to help you take back your power, challenge negative thinking, and focus on taking positive steps forward.